05/28/2009

By Kara Herlihy

The voice vote to rescind Fayston's Article 19 was "boisterous and a majority yes" according to reports from the revote, which took place last Wednesday, May 20.

Fayston residents overwhelmingly voted in favor of rescinding a narrowly passed (59-54) Article 19 that authorized the town to spend an amount not to exceed $8,000 to contract with the Washington County Sheriff's Department. Article 19 was originally passed at Town Meeting in March.

Article 19 read, "Shall the voters of the town of Fayston vote to rescind Article 19 'Shall of the town of Fayston engage the Washington County Sheriff's Department from April 1, 2009, until December 31, 2009, for an amount not to exceed $8,000?' as lastly voted and passed on March 3, 2009."

During a question-and-answer period, it was determined that the town does not have proper road signage in place for traffic control. There would be a need for approximately 50 more signs with a cost of more than $100 plus labor.

Town officials said they believe there is proper signage on Number Nine Hill Road, Kew Vasseur Road, North and Center Fayston Roads and German Flats Road.

Washington County Deputy Sheriff Peter Laskowski was present at the May 20 revote but was not allowed to speak. Following a motion made by Arthur Vasseur to not allow Laskowski to speak, a hand vote determined Laskowski was not allowed to speak. Of the 131 registered voters, 27 voted in favor of hearing Laskowski, while the remaining 104 voted against.

The successful rescission of Article 19 (ending police patrol in Fayston) required votes that exceeded two-thirds of the original 59 that voted in favor on Town Meeting Day.

According to state statute, "A majority vote in favor of reconsideration or rescission, of a question voted on by paper or Australian ballot, shall not be effective unless the number of votes cast in favor of reconsideration or rescission exceeds two-thirds of the number of votes cast for the prevailing side at the original meeting unless the voters of the municipality approve a different percentage."

The final voice vote resulted in a majority to rescind the article, with a handful of no votes counted.

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